south east asian mussel curryrating:
If you like shellfish and Asian curries, you'll very probably like this. Perfect with steamed white rice, Malay Coconut Rice or ladled generously over scalded rice noodles. Mildly spicy and smells amazing. If you're concerned about cholesterol, replace the coconut milk with half skim milk and half low fat yogurt.
Prep : 25 mins
Cook : 15 mins
Serves : 4
1 kg mussels in shell - scrub off barnacles and beard, rinse thoroughly and drain
200ml coconut milk - canned
250 ml water or light chicken stock
1/2 inch piece fresh turmeric - scraped
2 inch knob fresh ginger - scraped
2 thick large slices galangal or laos - scraped
2 stalks fresh lemongrass - discard coarse outer leaves, use bottom half, no more than 5 inches up from root stump
5 cloves garlic - peeled
5 shallots - peeled
5 fresh large red chilies - discard seeds and stems
6 fresh makrut/kaffir lime leaves
1 fresh turmeric leaf, torn into 8 (if you can find it)
1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
1 tsp granulated chicken stock or to taste (optional)
Pinch of sugar
Roughly chop turmeric, ginger, galangal, lemongrass, garlic, shallotsand chilies then pop in a blender/liquidiser and process to a smooth paste using as little water as possible. Don't use a food chopper - the result will be much too coarse. You could use a pestle and mortar if you have one.
Heat 6tbs oil in a wok, deep pan or pot. When hot, put in spice paste and and keep stirring on medium heat till fragrant and you start coughing or sneezing. This should take about 8 minutes of stir frying.
Dump in mussels and mix well. Pour in coconut milk and water OR stock and bring to the boil. Add makrut and turmeric leaves, put lid on and and lower heat. Simmer gently till mussels open. This should take 3 - 5 minutes, tops. Do not overcook (tough, rubbery mussels *YUCK*)
Season to taste, turn off heat and serve immediately with white rice or over scalded rice noodles. I like a sprinkling of coriander leaves and a squeeze or lime over it.